Andrew Stone, Chairman of the West London Synagogue of British Jews, today announced the appointment of Emily Reitsma-Jurman as the Synagogue’s new Associate Rabbi.
This follows a robust recruitment process that attracted a good range of candidates from across the world.
Rabbi Emily has a great deal to bring to the West London Synagogue team, but is particularly well known for her work at Edgware and Hendon Reform Synagogue with children, families and young adults.
Andrew Stone, Chairman of WLS says:
We are so pleased that Rabbi Emily is joining us. She brings many skills, qualities and interests to us. On behalf of the Congregation, Staff and Board, I warmly welcome her to our community. Rabbi Emily will join West London Synagogue’s rabbinate by early 2021, and will make a significant contribution to our vision and future direction.
Rabbi Helen Freeman and Rabbi David Mitchell, Co-Senior Rabbis of West London Synagogue, add:
We are delighted that Rabbi Emily will join the rabbinic team at West London Synagogue as our new Associate Rabbi. Already well known for her excellent work, she will make a much-valued colleague and will bring so much to our community family, particularly in the connections she looks forward to making with our families and younger members. Rabbi Emily has made a huge difference at Edgware and Hendon Reform Synagogue in her seven years there, especially with its Religion School and through her creativity when leading informal services. She has endeared herself to the entire congregation at our sister community, and we are certain that she will settle in to our Rabbinic team really quickly.
Rabbi Emily says:
I have loved my time at Edgware & Hendon Reform Synagogue; it has been an honour and a joy. I will miss dearly the community and my colleagues, especially Rabbi Mark Goldsmith and Rabbi Debbie Young-Somers. It is, however, time for a new challenge, and I am absolutely delighted to be joining West London Synagogue as its new Associate Rabbi. I very much look forward to bringing my enthusiasm to my new community family, and to learning from and working with Rabbi Helen Freeman and Rabbi David Mitchell, whose leadership and vision for the future are truly exciting.
For further information, please contact Jim Fletcher:
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Notes for Editors:
West London Synagogue
West London Synagogue is the UK’s flagship Reform Synagogue. Based in the heart of London, we are a welcoming, intergenerational and inclusive centre of Jewish life. We are proud of our diverse forms of worship, our progressive values, our quest for learning, our commitment to Tikkun Olam, our musical heritage and our years of tradition.
Rabbi Emily Reitsma-Jurman
Rabbi Emily was born and raised in a suburb of Toronto in Canada and until young adulthood studied music and theatre. She attended York University (Ontario) receiving her BA in Religious Studies with a specialisation in Jewish studies. It was at university that Rabbi Emily began to work at her synagogue as a cantorial soloist, religion school teacher, youth advisor and Bar/Bat Mitzvah tutor. She began rabbinical studies at Leo Baeck College in 2010, spending the first year with students of Hebrew Union College in Jerusalem. Upon moving to Britain in 2011, she began working at Edgware & District Reform Synagogue and was inducted as their first female rabbi upon her ordination in 2015. She continued working there during and after its merger with the Reform community in Hendon when the synagogue became Edgware & Hendon Reform Synagogue. Rabbi Emily is passionate about education, pastoral care, and making synagogues welcoming and inclusive spaces. When not working, she spends her time knitting, gardening, listening to music, watching science fiction classics, playing piano and guitar, and hanging out with her wife Dr.Renée Reitsma-Jurman (West London Synagogue member) and their cat Olive.